Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has confirmed that Eric Bailly could be sidelined for the remainder of the year after undergoing an operation for a knee injury picked up during the recent pre-season friendly against Tottenham Hotspur.
In a report covered by the club’s official website, Solskjaer said that the centre-back won’t be available for the next four or five months following a surgery to rectify the knee concern, he said: “He’s had an operation. He’ll miss the best part of four or five months. Hopefully, we’ll get him back around about Christmas.”
Bailly has been with the Mancunian giants since the summer of 2016 and during this period, he has suffered multiple injury concerns which have restricted him from commanding a regular role at the heart of the club’s defence.
The 25-year-old is now expected to be on the treatment table with another long-term setback and it remains to be seen whether the club continue to stay patient with him, given he has shown no signs of overcoming his injury record.
Aside from Bailly, United have five central defenders in the form of Victor Lindelof, Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Marcos Rojo and Axel Tuanzebe and they should comfortably cover up the Ivorian’s absence for the first half of next season.
Still, Solskjaer appears intent on recruiting Harry Maguire from Leicester City to strengthen the ranks further and it is quite understandable, considering the club conceded 54 goals during the course of the previous Premier League campaign.
Manchester United have won every game during their pre-season campaign and their most-recent friendly saw them secure a 1-0 win over Norwegian side Kristiansund. Juan Mata scored the winner through a late penalty in the 92nd minute.